Taira no Masakado, or simply Masakado, was a samurai during the Heian period in Japan. He led a small but thriving rebellion to capture three provinces, Hitachi, Shimotsuke and Kouzuke, now known as the Kanto region's Ibaraki, Tochigi and Gunma prefectures respectively. As a response to the rebellious member of the Taira clan, the Kyoto central government at the time announced the bounty on his head. At the Battle of Kojima occurring eastward of Kanto, Masakado was killed by Fujiwara no Hidesato and Taira no Sadamori, his cousin. His head was brought to Kyoto on a pike, and later to Edo where it was buried after his head didn’t display any sign of decay, began shouting for his body, then flew off. Here he is regarded by the locals as a demigod, and a belief persists that the conditions of his shrine dictates the fortune of the metropolis.
After the great flood, the protagonist can visit the dwelling place of Masakado on a solitary island housing the Imperial Palace. If aligned with Neutral, Masakado laments the destruction of Tokyo between the warring factions, and bestows his sword to the protagonist. After receiving his sword, the player can retrieve his armor from each of the Four Heavenly Kings' mansions, the Gate Orb pulling one piece per mansion to the water's surface when the protagonist gets close enough.
Kojiro Souma is the reincarnation of Masakado, both Gagyson and a secret order that watches him fear his awakening as it will not only foil Ose's revival, but also lead to great destruction across the earth. Later, in order to save Kojiro's life the young witch Kyoko reincarnates him. Masakado then defeats the demons threatening to kill his brother and Cerberus, and together with Cerberus faces off against Ose. Though easily beating Ose, thanks to letting his guard down Ose knocks Cerberus out and catches Masakado, but is able to free himself and continue fighting Ose. After Akito Kobayashi reincarnates Saki as Konohana Sakuya, Masakado defeats Ose for good by unleashing an attack that incinerates him completely. Exhausted from the fight, he is caught by Konohana Sakuya as he falls and turns back into Kojiro.
Masakado is first mentioned upon Aleph's arrival to Roppongi, where he is greeted by a servant, Hiruko. According to Hiruko, the general's body is currently torn to six-pieces as he fell victim to the internal conflict between the Yamato Gods. Thus, Hiruko requests Aleph to break the seals sealing the six pieces of the corpse, and retrieve them so Masakado can be resurrected.
Upon retrieving all of the body pieces, Hiruko will then prompt Aleph to fuse them all and resurrect him at the Jakyo Manor. However, as Aleph only retrieved Masakado's corpse, but not his soul, the fusion of the body parts creates the soulless form of Masakado. Hiruko later informs Aleph that the general's soul is crucial to fully resurrect him, and reveals that he actually holds it. Congratulating Aleph for his efforts in retrieving Masakado's body parts, Hiruko grants the soul to Aleph, allowing the fusion master to fuse Masakado's soul to his body, fully resurrecting him.
As a token of gratitude for resurrecting him, Masakado grants Aleph the Sun Pillar and Katana of Masakado, and helps Aleph to break the lock in the Sealed Cave. There, Aleph must then free the Amatsu clan sealed inside. Masakado later informs Aleph that due to his recent awakening, his powers are not fully healed yet, and thus needs rest for to recover his strength, bidding him farewell.
In the Neutral route, Katana of Masakado later helps Aleph in banishing the guard demons guarding Lucifer's Castle Kether.
Masakado makes a cameo appearance in Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne. If the Demi-fiend manages to collect all of the 24 Magatama scattered around the Vortex World, the minister of the Cathedral of Shadows will give the Demi-fiend the "Lord's Blade", advising him to visit the grave of Masakado with the sword in his possession. Upon examining the gravestone, the blade will react, and the Demi-fiend will find himself teleported to the Bandou Shrine.
After lowering the pillars and defeating all four Devas, the Demi-fiend can finally approach Masakado, who proceeds to question the Demi-fiend's purpose. Regardless of the answer, Masakado will impart his power to the Demi-fiend in the form of the Magatama Masakados. It is all he can do since he cannot exist in the world outside.
Masakado also tells the Demi-fiend that regardless of what kind of world Tokyo would turn out to be, it is still Tokyo. As the current bearer of his power, the Demi-fiend will now protect Tokyo in Masakado's stead however the Demi-fiend sees fit. If the player re-enters and speaks to Masakado again, the general will encourage the Demi-fiend to journey forth and conquer the multiverse and further prompts him to choose how he best feels Tokyo should be protected.
Despite having a placeholder in the game's files for years, Masakado first appeared during the 2015 summer Masakado Manifestation event, acting as the final boss of the Masakado burial mound. By completing the instance a number of times, players were able to obtain his plug-in, allowing him to be created by either a double-fusion of the upgraded Beiji Weng and Daisoujou or by fusing event variants of Amaterasu's female form and Bishamonten.
"A general who declared himself the new emperor of Japan, but fell to Hidesato Fujiwara and Sadamori Taira. He was enshrined to quell his spirit, and later became known as the protector god of Kanto. According to the Otogizoshi, he was over 210 cm tall, had a body made of metal, and had two pupils in his left eye. However, he had a weakness: his temple was still made of flesh."
—Shin Megami Tensei IV profile
Masakado is a key figure in the story and is central to the Neutral route. His sword is carried by Skins, who cannot unsheathe it. On Neutral Skins will pass down the sword to the player when the latter speaks Masakado's name and is able to unsheathe the sword. Masakado became the ceiling over Tokyo to prevent God's wrath from destroying the city, and whatever little of his power remained after creating the Firmament was sealed away in Ginza. By drawing the sword in front of the monolith there, Masakado's soul is awakened once again. Masakado greets Flynn by name, noting that he has been reincarnated.
In the neutral route, Masakado attempts to remove the Firmament above Tokyo but is unable to do so without the Three Great Spirits of Hope, Goodwill, and Spite which grant him power since most of his own is still in the ceiling. Flynn is tasked with retrieving them: the Great Spirit of Hope must be recreated by giving hope to the people of Tokyo by becoming Champion and is initially the only one needed until Masakado learned the other two had become the Demon Lord and God's Chariot.
The Great Spirit of Goodwill became Merkabah and the Great Spirit of Spite became Lucifer, both of whom seek to become the hopes of the people and now go against the spirit of Hope which they both are supposed to support. Upon collecting Goodwill, Isabeau evacuates the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado to allow Masakado to remove the Firmament. Once Spite has been obtained both are fed to the deity, he fuses with the Firmament and returns to his true form, destroying Mikado and returning the sky and sunlight to Tokyo.
"The body double of Taira no Masakado, which appears in the Otogizoshi. It is said there were seven doubles, or perhaps seven total with the real one included. This number comes from Myoken worship. In the Otogizoshi, the doubles were created from straw dolls, but there are legends which say the doubles were vassals who sacrificed themselves for their lord."
—Masakado's Shadow profile
In the "For the Past... For the Future" DLC Challenge Quest, it is revealed by Stephen that Flynn's former self accompanied Masakado to defend Tokyo from the ICBM attack 25 years ago. Masakado took the form of a gigantic being to become the shield, but by doing so he went berserk and threatened to destroy Tokyo. Flynn was sent back in time to help control the raging god but had no choice but to attack Masakado until he came to his senses.
The gruelling battle was timed, as time grew short as the missile approached Tokyo, leaving only ten turns to defeat Masakado. After his defeat, he moans about how he lost control of the good and evil within him, and only Flynn's hopes have restored his true self. He promises to protect Tokyo and Flynn's hope as his body then steadily falls down and covers the entirety of Tokyo, becoming the Firmament. His back was later used by the angels to construct what would become the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado.
Masakado communicates a final time with Flynn, telling him humanity has been protected, but still must endure good and evil in the eternal battle of law against chaos, and thanks him for giving all humans the gift of hope, saying that as long as there is hope, the Goddess shall never die. He then grants Flynn his Shadow's data, allowing him to summon it as a demon in battle.
Masakado is shown creating the dome seen in Shin Megami Tensei IV and Apocalypse, but as he finishes a nuke collides with his head, causing it to fall off and fall into Ginza where it lays in both games.
Masakado is featured as both an event demon and featured summon in celebration of the game's first anniversary.
Undead demons appeared in droves one night. These demons were summoned by an Acolyte Dx2 whose goal was to revive Japan's "Bubble Economy" by turning the citizens of Tokyo into zombies. Masakado appears before the Liberators and urges them to do their part in protecting Tokyo. After the Dx2 is taken into custody, Masakado offers words of gratitude and reminds them of the burden they have to bear.
Masakado can also be fought in a Devil Buster challenge mission assuming that the player has picked up required items from the Four Devas in the 41st~50th floors of the Aura Gate for the duration of the event.
"A general who declared himself the new emperor of Japan, but fell to Hidesato Fujiwara and Sadamori Taira. He was enshrined to quell his spirit, and later became known as the protector god of Kanto. According to the Otogizoshi, he stood over 6'10", had a head, arms, and legs of gold, and had two pupils in his left eye. His body was made of iron, but his temple was his only weak spot."
—Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers 3DS compendium
Masakado can be obtained if Zeed is level 80 or above and fused with Hachiman during a new moon.
"A general who declared himself the new emperor of Japan, but fell to Hidesato Fujiwara and Sadamori Taira. After death, he was enshrined to quell his spirit, and later became known as the protector god of Kanto."
Masakado will only be available on New Game Plus after completing 103% of the Case Files in the game; this requires completing the Chaos Path and beating the New Game Plus ones given by Louis Cyphre you get from the Chaos playthrough. A man named Soma will be near the Narumi Detective Agency and gives the case file.
Masakado is on the 999th floor in the Confinement Chamber. The anger and rage that fuels him will soon make it possible for him to be free. He is joined in battle by an Impostor Masakado, who is weak against all four elements. A new Impostor spawns after each defeat but only so many times. Masakado uses the bad luck roulette greatly to his advantage. Among the many things the roulette will use against Raidou is to reflect all damage on Masakado, reducing Raidou's stats to 1, null all elements but almighty, kill all summoned demons, etc. Using Luck Locusts will cancel these effects. After a certain amount of damage Masakado will randomly teleport around three spots on the field and will use one of his attacks after teleporting.
After his HP has dropped to zero he will stop moving, Raidou must then negotiate with him to end the battle. After the battle it is revealed that Souma is Masakado and he thanks Raidou for defeating his hatred, which had run amok thanks to the negative energy influencing the capital. Raidou's rewards is the Blaze Steel and the ability to fuse Masakado. Masakado can be fought more if Raidou wishes to get more Blaze Steels.
"Taira no Masakado, hero of the Heian Period. He claimed the title "Shinno" (New Emperor) and rebelled against the government. He was killed, but it is said he became a demigod."
—Persona 3 Compendium
Masakado appears as a Persona of the Tower Arcana in Persona 3. He can only be summoned by obtaining the key item Masakados, which can only be obtained by completing all of Elizabeth's Persona Fusion requests. In reference towards his role in Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne, Masakado's fusion prerequisite requires the protagonist to perform a cross-spread fusion consists of Zouchouten, Komokuten, Jikokuten and Bishamonten in the Velvet Room. Masakado also grants the equipment Masakado's Hair, which heightens the occurrences of evading physical attacks.
In FES and Portable, the strongest two-hand sword, the Katana of Masakado, can also be obtained by fusing Masakado with a Nihil weapon.
Survives with HP fully restored after suffering a fatal blow once per battle.
2 to 4 hits of weak gun damage to multiple foes.
Medium almighty damage to all foes. Neutral target takes 50% more damage.
Medium physical damage and 50% instant kill to all foes.
At the beginning of every turn, Masakado is scripted to use "Move Slowly," "Aim Carefully" then "Prayer" or "Clench Fist" in a sequence. These moves do nothing but waste his turn icons, so effectively he only has 3 turn icons.